Reliving David Ortiz's greatest moments as he recovers
Clutch home runs, memorable speech highlight future Hall of Famer's career
As sports fans everywhere wish legendary former Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz a speedy recovery after he was shot in the Dominican Republic on Sunday, we thought we'd take this opportunity to remind you about some of his biggest moments in what surely will be a Hall of Fame career.
2004 ALCS Game 4
Things looked bleak for the Red Sox, who were three outs away from getting swept by the Yankees after losing the first three games of the series and trailing 4-3 going into the bottom of the ninth as arguably the game’s best closer ever, Mariano Rivera, took the mound to finish off Boston.
But the Red Sox managed a run off Rivera in the ninth to tie the game, then Ortiz extended the season for the Red Sox by hitting a 2-run home run in the bottom of the 12th to win the game, 6-4.
2004 ALCS Game 5
Just a night later, Ortiz once again extended Boston’s season, albeit in a little less dramatic fashion than his home run to end Game 4. With runners on first and second, two outs and the game tied at 4-4, Ortiz fought off an inside pitch and hit a blooper to center field, scoring the winning run in a 5-4 Red Sox victory to force a Game 6.
Boston went on to win the next two games to complete the improbable series comeback against the Yankees, setting up its first World Series win since 1918.
2013 ALCS Game 2
The Detroit Tigers seemingly had the Red Sox on the ropes, up 1-0 in the series and 5-1 in Game 2 going into the bottom of the eighth when Ortiz stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and two outs against Detroit closer Joaquin Benoit.
On the first pitch, Ortiz stunned Detroit and brought the Fenway Park crowd to jubilation by hitting a grand slam just over the wall in right, in the process sending Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter tumbling over that short wall into Boston’s bullpen.
Boston ended up winning the game, the series in six games against the Tigers, and ultimately, the World Series against St. Louis.
500th home run
Getting to 500 home runs is a milestone for any baseball player that just about guarantees a place in the Hall of Fame, and Ortiz reached that mark on Sept. 12, 2015, with a home run at Tampa Bay.
Speech after bombing
In something that transcended sports or anything done on the field, Ortiz rallied the entire Boston community in a riveting speech during Boston’s first home game following the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013.
Ortiz fired up the crowd in a short speech, saying, “Nobody going to dictate our freedom. Stay strong.”
The speech also included some foul language that really fired up the crowd, so we didn't include the video.
But go look it up on Google if curious.
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